Experience, Engage, Work in the Humanities 

Acquiring one of the most essential skills – learning how to question -- is at the heart of the study of the humanities at Franklin & Marshall College.

We recognize that in whatever path of life students choose, the ability to understand differing values, identify conflicts in thinking and reasoning, and find answers to complex questions is essential for cultivating qualities of innovation and leadership.

That's why we emphasize study in intimate classes, with the student-to-faculty ratio in some humanities majors, such as philosophy, as small as 5:1. And we also offer opportunities for field study and research that students might usually expect to pursue in the sciences or other fields. Students at F&M experience and engage with the questions that students elsewhere might only read about.

Students studying classics, for example, have kneeled alongside faculty with chisels in hand, digging at an archaeological site in Tuscany to find answers buried for millennia; and a student of philosophy traveled to Israel with an F&M professor to present a published paper they co-authored on the subject of emotions.

This is part of the distinctiveness  in our approach to the humanities. Study at F&M spans the full range of study of human culture and the human experience, from classical archaeology to literature, to philosophy and cultural studies, and through languages. 

We offer courses in 11 languages, ranging from introductory language courses to upper-level seminars taught in other languages on topics such as literature and film.

F&M embraces the principle that students who are linguistically, intellectually and culturally equipped to communicate successfully are better prepared to thrive in our multicultural society, both in the United States and around the world.

Story 8/28/2014

Mapping Deserted Greek Villages for Cultural and...

An F&M professor and his student researcher used the latest tool in archeology, the drone, to capture aerial photos in a survey of abandoned Greek villages.

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Story 2/16/2012

Student, Professor Take Research Findings to Israel

Professor of Philosophy Bennett Helm and senior Dan Kaplan traveled to Israel to present a paper they co-authored that explored emotions through a metaphysical lens. 

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Humanities for Life

Students Study Arabic for Life Beyond F&M 

Two Franklin & Marshall students have been selected for the U.S. Department of State's prestigious Critical Language Scholarship to study Arabic abroad hope to apply their language skills to their professional careers.  Religious Studies major Morgan Kincade traveled to Jordan and psychology major Brenna Snyder traveled to Morocco as part of a select group of 550 undergraduate and graduate students from across the country in a program designed to promote use of critical language beyond college.

Did you know ...

Some of the world's most prominent leaders in all sectors of business and industry majored in the humanities as undergraduates at colleges across the country:

  • Founder of the CNN and TBS cable TV networks, Ted Turner, was a classics major
  • Former Walt Disney Company CEO Michael Eisner was a double major in English and theatre
  • Former CEO of MTV, Judy McGrath, and the former CEO of Avon cosmetics, Andrea Jung, were both English majors

Among graduates of F&M:

  • Former counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Stan Brand graduated with a major in English
  • Actor Treat Williams of the TV series "Heartland" and "Everwood" majored in drama (now configured as a major in theatre)

The Pulse of the Humanities at F&M

Story 9/21/2017

Information Increasing, But Common Understanding Decreasing,...

Even as digital technology provides more information, allowing instantaneous access and sharing, people struggle to synthesize that information and form a common understanding of reality, said author...

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Story 9/14/2017

From Running to Cooking, Journalists Discuss Their Craft and...

September features health and fitness nonfiction at Philadelphia Alumni Writers House  with journalists Christopher McDougall Jen A. Miller on Sept. 21, and Phoebe Lapine on Sept. 27. 

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Story 9/13/2017

F&M Poet Returns to the Classroom After a Year Abroad on...

Professor and poet, Meg Day reflected on her journey, where  she explored 16 countries around the world as a recipient of the Amy Lowell Poetry Travelling Scholarship. 

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Story 9/1/2017

Talking with Author Emily St. John Mandel

The acclaimed author of the postapocalyptic 2014 novel, “Station Eleven,” visit F&M on Sept. 13 for a conversation and a reading at the Philadelphia Alumni Writers House.

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Story 9/1/2017

Arab Arts Festival to Showcase a Rich Culture

“Arab Comics: 90 Years of Popular Visual Culture,” showing at Franklin & Marshall College’s Phillips Museum of Art from Sept. 6 through Dec. 8, is part of the College’s Arab Arts Festival, an...

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Story 5/3/2017

Senior Spotlight: Keeping to the Beat of His Passion

"F&M gave me many incredible opportunities." As they prepare for their May 13 Commencement Ceremony, Franklin & Marshall seniors look back at their four years on campus—and what's next.

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Story 5/2/2017

Senior Spotlight: Embracing the Importance of Community

"My most memorable time at F&M was when I had the honor of bringing Mark Charles to campus to speak at Common Hour. " As they prepare for their May 13 Commencement Ceremony, Franklin & Marshall...

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Story 5/1/2017

Senior Spotlight: Creating Opportunities to Serve Others...

"After my freshman year, I traveled with our soccer team to South Africa." As they prepare for their May 13 Commencement Ceremony, Franklin & Marshall seniors look back at their four years on campus—...

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Story 4/26/2017

Kneedler Award Recipient Keeps Things Light, Efficient,...

Behind her desk, motivational posters cover a wall, and several capture who she is – “Sharing,” “Gratitude,” “Tenacious,” “Do or do not, there is no try,” “Never Let Inexperience Get in the Way of...

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